34 minutes | Dec 6, 2020
156. Buy In From The Top with Geoff McDonald
“What really saved my life during that time was my ability to talk” I am SUPER excited to have gotten the chance to interview the Legendary, Mental Health Power House that is Geoff McDonald! Best known as a global advocate, campaigner and consultant who is passionate about addressing the stigma of mental ill health in workplaces, and about helping organisations embed purpose as a key driver of business performance. His sense of purpose to his work was catalysed by his diagnosis in 2008 of Anxiety fuelled depression. Geoff shares his experience of mental ill health, his journey to recovery as well as what goes into a sustainable health and wellbeing initiative within the workplace. We go deep on topics such as; Diagnosis of anxiety fuelled depression Learning to talk Taking responsibility for our wellbeing Health & Wellbeing plans in the workplace The stigma & shame associated with depression Taking accountability in order to get better The blessing of love during recovery Reintegrating at work Transition from employment into purpose Tools that contribute to maintaining recovery Connect with Geoff and learn more about his work at geoffmcdonald.co.uk , linkedIn &Twitter. Hear more about our mental health work at Petra Velzeboer Ltd.
49 minutes | Nov 29, 2020
155. Tactics for Creating a Happier Workforce with Samantha Clarke
‘It’s not going back to business as normal, we’re in a very new era now and If you’re not stretching yourself to meet that you will get left behind’ Samantha Clarke is an amazing friend of mine, Happiness Consultant, TedX speaker and Author of Love it or Leave it . She advices global companies on Happiness at Work and supports people’s conscious decisions to either Love it or Leave it! She is full of innovative advice for employers and employees on finding happiness in our work as well as providing practical tips on how we can all adjust to the change born from the pandemic! We get practical on topics such as: Finding the opportunity in change and disruption Creating safe spaces for employees to be vulnerable Steps to becoming a change maker Challenging your belief system and evaluating your achievements Physical & Mental Health signs that it is time for change Widening our networks and making new contacts Balancing head and heart decisions Managing loneliness during the pandemic Championing your people to deliver their best Creating that work / life definition Preventing tech fatigue and creating wiser practices Find out more by connecting with Samantha on Linkedin and you can see her full personal story in Episode 11 titled: How Badly do you Want it . Find out more by connecting with Samantha on Linkedin and hear more about our mental health work at Petra Velzeboer Ltd. You can catch a previous interview with Samantha How Badly do you Want it Further Resources mentioned in this episode:: Micro Mentor Life Coach Directory Love it or Leave it
38 minutes | Nov 22, 2020
154. Coming out and the new normal with Matthew Clements
“When I came out…..I had completely unconditional support and love and I realised that’s sadly not the case for everyone” I feel very privileged to interview Matthew Clements. Matthew is the Senior diversity and inclusion advisor at Herbert Smith Freehills and i have had the pleasure of working with him through the partnership between Medigold and PVL where i have been supporting the Mental Health strategy and training of HSF. We discuss Mental health and his Matthew goes deep on his own experience of mental health and coming out to his family and friends. We cover other topics such as: Challenges of mental health in the workplace HSF Thrive Strategy The evolution of how businesses understand mental health Promoting an inclusive culture Mental health champions Adapting to needs during the pandemic The build up to coming out to family and friends No longer being able to hide / the loss of control The benefits of coming out Looking back on yourself with kindness The ripple effects of shared stories & experiences Creating impact through authenticity Diversity & Inclusion in the workplace The mental health silver lining in the pandemic The need for organisations to step up mental health strategy Agile & remote working Non-negotiables around self-care Connect with Matthew on Linkedin and hear more about our mental health work at Petra Velzeboer Ltd.
41 minutes | Nov 16, 2020
153. Fill Your Cup with Hannah Meredith
“You really can’t pour from an empty cup. You need to make sure you are ok first” Ranked as one of the top 10 companies to work for by The Sunday Times and recently shortlisted for the REBA wellbeing awards, Hannah Meredith leads the way on Health and Wellbeing for MVF Global We discuss the current and long-lasting impact of the pandemic on employees and their mental health and Hannah lends practical advice on how employers can implement mental health strategies. Hannah also opens up about her personal struggles with anxiety how she’s learned to manage these effectively. We cover topics such as: The impact of providing constant support on People Teams The longterm effects of covid-19 on mental health Home working and creating boundaries to thrive Company initiatives during lockdown to support mental health Understanding the needs of your workforce Cultivating an open culture The daily struggle anxiety struggle Practicing Self-awareness and coping strategies The importance of connection The Pandemic and relationships Aiming for prevention The opportunities arising from Covid Connect with Hannah on Linkedin and hear more about our mental health work at Petra Velzeboer Ltd.
49 minutes | Nov 9, 2020
152. Pandemic Baby: Thoughts on leading by example with Selena Alcover
‘We have to adapt with the changing times and we have to adapt to what are employees are needing’ So excited to speak with Selena Alcover who is an Employee Experience Manager at National Grid. We discuss the impact of the current pandemic on employees and Selena offers tangible advice to leaders on supporting their workforce through these challenging times as well as opening up about her own personal struggle of becoming a first time parent in the midst of a pandemic. We go deep on: Remembering to ask for advice and help Stress and new challenges caused by the pandemic Adapting to the changing needs of employees The shared experience of the pandemic Leading by example and promoting work/life balance Driving mental health conversations and championing open culture in the workplace How to support employees during maternity Managing maternity cover dynamics The benefits of remote working Self -care during the pandemic Connect with Selena on Linkedin and hear more about our mental health work at Petra Velzeboer Ltd.
56 minutes | Nov 1, 2020
151. Off work with poor mental health - an employee experience and what helps with Tony Nneke
‘I would say to anyone, speak and there is bravery in that even if you are vulnerable ‘ Tony Nneke is Chair of Oracle UKIE Cultural Harmony Network and passionate about Diversity and Inclusion as well as mental health. Tony talks openly about needing to take time off work due to poor mental health and how leaders helped or hindered his experience in the workplace. We go deep on: Practicing vulnerability at work The need to create supportive and safe environments in the workplace Engaging in mental health conversations in the workplace Impact of mental health on productivity Opening up to management and colleagues The feeling of shame around mental health The Power of Conversation Childhood experiences of mental health Recognising the trigger points and the ongoing journey Finding your own balance and boundaries Connect with Tony on Linkedin and hear more about our mental health work at Petra Velzeboer Ltd.
48 minutes | Oct 26, 2020
150. Invest in Your People - Advice from 20 Years in the Military with Jules Parke-Robinson
‘I think you are a better leader if you bring your whole self to work ‘ I am so excited to have been introduced to Jules Parke-Robinson - with a 20 year career in the British Military and current experience as Chair of the British Wheelchair Basketball, she has amazing insights on motivating a team, men’s mental health and adapting to change. We discuss her experiences of mental health and leadership in the workplace as well as retiring only to be thrust in a world where she didn’t feel she belonged and struggled to adapt into a new career phase. Anyone who’s a leader or has hit rock bottom will relate to this episode! We go deep on: Creating an environment where it is safe to fail How attitudes to mental health have changed over the years in the military Creating impact and supporting people The challenge of being a woman in the military Demonstrating vulnerability as a leader Listening, space, permission and freedom Creating the right environment to support individuals to practice self-care Leading by example Allowing individuals to create their own boundaries Empowering people and demonstrating trust Understanding your workforce so you can nurture them and allow them to be their best self. Practicing self-care, parenting and adapting to change. Connect with Jules on Linkedin and hear more about our mental health work at Petra Velzeboer Ltd.
43 minutes | Oct 19, 2020
149. Young People and Our Workforce with Sayce Holmes - Lewis
‘As adults we seem to forget that we were once children ’ It was so great to speak with Sayce Holmes - Williams, CEO of Mentivity, Activist and key note speaker and a coach of young people. Sayce has a passion for raising the aspirations of young people between the ages of 8 & 25 by sharing his own personal stories and experiences of his childhood journey growing up in south east London. His organisation Mentivity is an inspirational mentoring organisation and alternative educational provision that provides aspirational support for young people, schools and parents through 1:1 mentoring and group conversation based learning. We go deep on: Tapping into your childhood experiences The importance of empathy Understanding individual journeys without judgement Current mental health needs of young people The loss of communication in today’s society Skills needed to champion mental health Sharing vulnerable experiences Breaking the stigma of Counselling Stimulating critical thinking in youth Engaging young people in the workplace Guided discovery Incorporating inclusive and supportive behaviour into recruitment Connect with Sayce on Linkedin and see more of his work at Mentivity
48 minutes | Oct 11, 2020
148. Mental Health at Work- A CEO on How to Lead by Example with David Allard
Super excited to have this conversation with David Allard, Part of the Petra Velzeboer team , David is now retired but has a wealth of experience as a CEO of a financial services organisation. David shares with me his approach to mental health in the workplace and how CEOs can champion the cause , leading by example, creating the correct environment and promoting the correct culture amongst their workforce. We discuss topics such as The importance of recruiting correctly Values An entitled generation? The need for patience Promoting open communication Recognising the signs as a leader Introducing fun & lightness to the workplace Developing a mental health strategy The bottom line Adapting to retirement Self-Care The future of the workplace The pressure of being positive as a leader / Choosing how to show up Connect with on Linkedin and join the conversation at Petra Velzeboer Ltd.
50 minutes | Oct 4, 2020
147.How to Build Team Mental Health with Rondette Amoy Smith
The most important question you can ask someone, is the simplest, it’s “How are you?” I am so excited for this new season where we focus 10 episodes on mental health at work and the people that champion this conversation with organisations. Rondette Smith is an executive director in Human Capital Management at Goldman Sachs. A member of the Diversity & inclusion team, she oversees the Black & Asian talent strategies across Europe, the Middle East & Africa. She is also part of our advisory board and works closely with the Petra Velzeboer Ltd team to help us advise companies on their mental health agenda. Rondette knows the crucial importance of mental health in the workplace and her personal story of a boyfriend being sectioned after going missing, hits to the heart of why she is passionate about this topic. We discuss topics such as: The changing narrative around mental health globally The impact of the C-19 Pandemic on Mental Health What companies can be doing to support their employees How to Lead by Example Creating effective forums where people can express themselves and learn Communicating your mental health parameters - what’s your ask? Home working & Mental Health The importance of Exercise and time out Dealing with personal trauma in the workplace Burnouts & non-negotiables Creating psychological safety with your team The detrimental effect of the lack of human contact during C-19 Long term effects of C-19 on the workplace Supporting the race conversation Connect with Rondette on Linkedin and join the conversation at Petra Velzeboer Ltd.
45 minutes | Aug 10, 2020
146. Do I have a Drinking Problem with Sam Church
“I remember laying face down shirt ripped, phone gone, money gone and thinking if I lay here long enough il just die” Totally relating to Sam’s story of his descent into alcoholism and the shame associated with it, I just HAD to get Sam Church on the A2A podcast to share his journey with me. Sam is a Mental Health Advocate, Sales Professional and Co-Founder of MENtality. Having lived the majority of his life with poor mental health and still having to work on this on a daily basis Sam knows first-hand what it’s like to feel the pain of poor Mental Health. Battling addiction, not sleeping, poor nutrition and closing off from the world was a daily routine for over a decade. Essentially Sam could not see a way out and fundamentality didn’t know how. Today Sam leads a different life. Overcoming this adversity and changing his life completely Sam now wants to give others the education that he didn’t have. We go deep on topics such as: MENtality Self-isolation Fascination of alcohol from a young age The Trauma trigger Path to alcohol Masking the addiction The catalyst moment for change Genetic predispositions Growth mindset Changing the habit and replacing the urge Non- negotiables to maintain being your best self Mediation & journaling Aligning your environment Connect with Sam and learn more about MENtality Instagram , Linkedin
46 minutes | Aug 2, 2020
145. Becoming Superhuman with Gavin Johnson
“When you fail, its just a moment, it’s not permanent, it doesn’t define you as a person” Gavin Johnson has always been a keen sportsman, he started as a decathlete and moved into the javelin winning various national medals. When Covid-19 hit, Gavin decided to change a few things in his life, focusing on writing, art and other business ventures with the hope of coming out of the pandemic better than he went in. He set about developing skills and began training to be a Life Coach which inspired him to write no less than 3 books! We discuss the driving force behind his achievements as well as going deep on the importance of cognitive distortions and the impact it’s having on society and people. Such a great conversation in which we touch on topics such as: Covid-19 and pivoting our intentions The path to athletic achievement Having the belief that you can achieve anything Knowing when it is time to quit or keep going Visualisation & mindset hacks Placing your energy in the right places Optimising your environment for success Breaking down goals to make them achievable The no-hope illusion Inner peace our greatest goal Racism in today’s society Connect with Gavin and learn more about his book The Little Book of Empowerment at: gavinlisene.com and on Instagram
46 minutes | Jul 27, 2020
144. Addiction Recovery with Enton Barefoot
“If I drink now, there’s no point carrying on. I’ll just go and kill myself” A passionate and avid sportsman, Enton played semi-professional football and was on track to follow his dream of playing as a career when a sliding doors moment changed everything. He fell gradually into a whirlwind life of addiction and homelessness. Enton is now twelve years sober, he is a qualified Drugs and Alcohol counsellor and has worked as a support worker for local charities. His passion is now to support people and offer them opportunity and hope through sharing his journey. Enton shares with me the experiences and influences that shaped the choices which would threaten to ruin his personal relationships and the life he once knew. An honest and open conversation about addiction, homelessness and life in recovery. We go deep on topics such as: Is addiction rooted in trauma Childhood anxiety First love break-up The appeal of alcohol Escapism through music Experimenting with cocaine Refusing to admit there is a problem Burning personal relationships Becoming homeless Lack of personal responsibility The changes since the start of recovery Rebuilding one step at a time Replacing addictions with addictions Suicide attempts Self-acceptance Connect with Enton and learn more about his book Laid Bare at: therealbarefoot.co.uk Instagram , Twitter
36 minutes | Jul 20, 2020
143. Living with Schizophrenia with Wesley Alston
“A lot of people that knew me could sense that something strange was going on” I feel so privileged to speak with Wesley Alston as he opens up to me about his experience of living with Schizophrenia. Wesley is 29 years old, from Greensboro, North Carolina, U.S.A. and started to experience symptoms of schizophrenia in 2011 at the age of 20. It was later that same year he was diagnosed. Through mentorship and support from a number of people including his family, psychiatrist and day program "Sanctuary House" Wesley has been able to regain stability over the last ten years. He now finds himself waking up every day feeling joyous and confident about his life. We go deep on topics such as: The effects of Covid-19 on mental health First symptoms of Schizophrenia Being hospitalised Navigating the first few years after diagnosis The struggle of finding a compatible medication The stigma of mental health and the distancing of friends Reintegration into the workplace and education after diagnosis Battling the voices within Coping mechanisms to keep the best state of mental health Feeling of purpose and looking to the future Benefits of a good support system Practicing patience The importance of talking Connect with Wesley more at: Instagram
33 minutes | Jul 12, 2020
142. Practical tips for Elite Performance with Dr Philip Hopley
Dr Phil Hopley helps me re-think entrepreneurship and the cult of busy! This felt like a private advice session and so timely while scaling my business during one of the most challenging times globally. As entrepreneurs we are excited about our work and presume that working flat out is the only way through! Dr Phil works with elite performers and challenges this idea explaining the 1 non-negotiable when it comes to sustaining high performance: RECOVERY! Dr Phil’s training in forensic, general and sport psychiatry combined with a career playing premiership rugby has enabled him to develop his passion for the mental health of elite performance in sport and business. We discuss: Cognitive Intervention Techniques Building competence around exposure and opportunity Modelling work Ethic Resilience and being prepared to fail Pursuing things that give you joy The resilience gene Covid-19 resilience & pressures Embedding Recovery behaviours into our lives Achieving balance Promoting the correct mental culture in the workplace Turning catastrophisation into looking for opportunity Connect with Dr Phil and learn more about his work at: cognacity.co.uk, linkedIn , Twitter and Instagram
40 minutes | Jul 5, 2020
141. Lessons for Life with Matthew Zinman
I’m very excited about this episode from a man who has been through an enormous amount but has channelled everything into passion and progress! Matt Zinman is a personal success trainer whose varied experiences as an entrepreneur, athlete, single parent, caretaker, consultant and nonprofit founder drive him to be a difference-maker. Matt suffered from depression since his early teens. Losing his Mother to HIV contracted from tainted blood during surgery and the loss of a brother to suicide, has forced Matt to develop coping skills and resilience throughout his life. Matt now lives each day to fulfil his goal to positively impact as many people as possible. Matt opens up about his past catalyst moments and how he strengthened his mindset. We discuss: Childhood defining moments Traumatic loss of a Mother & Sibling Managing depression through self-care Staying open through grief and finding support Depression misconceptions Recognising the signs Managing grief and moving forward Law of attraction & amplifying gratitude Post trauma parenting advice Connect with Matthew and learn more about his work at: Z-isms.com , linkedIn , Twitter and Instagram Amazon author Page
32 minutes | Jun 28, 2020
140. De-stress Your Body with Geeta Sidhu-Robb
“Your power your strength your confidence , comes from your physical state Finding a cure for her sick son led ex lawyer Geeta Sidhu-Robb to be a successful Health Entrepreneur. She is a health & stress specialist who provides specialist health programmes for the over 40. As well as explaining how stress impacts us, Geeta shares her inspiring story with me and details how she went from being homeless to creating her multi award winning empire. We go deep on topics such as. Habit changing over 40 Choosing to invest in ourselves Being conditioned throughout our lives Understanding Drive vs Stress Recognising Burnout Physical symptoms of stress Planning non -negotiables Meditation & Journalling Creating self-awareness Gender differences around stress Connect with Geeta and learn more about her work at: NoshDetox.com , linkedIn , Twitter and Instagram
37 minutes | Jun 22, 2020
139. Starbucks Finance Director on Mental Fitness
“There’s lots of ways we can show kindness, I think that goes a long way to supporting our mental health and wellbeing during these times” Jonny Jacobs is the Financial Director of Starbucks, a Trustee for the Mental Health Foundation and an Advisory Board Member for Mental Health summit Mad World. Jonny is passionate about engaging with businesses on the topic of mental health, challenging stigma and ensuring leadership is inclusive and purposeful, creating psychological safety in times of upheaval. We discuss his childhood and how he became an advocate for Mental Health and his history raising awareness on the subject. We touch on topics such as: How mental health conversations have evolved over the years Childhood adversity and influences Building resilience and resourcefulness Businesses and mental health The need for businesses to be authentic Line Management & mental health Leading by example in companies Encouraging kindness Remote working and supporting healthy cultures Psychological safety points and the need for empathy Connect with Jonny and learn more about his work at: Mental Health Foundation , linkedIn , Twitter
37 minutes | Jun 7, 2020
138. The Bucket List Guy Travis Bell
“A Regret free life rather than a regretful life” Travis Bell has had a Bucket List since the age of 18, but it wasn’t until he did his first seminar that he realised that this was not something that was common practice. From this realisation the ‘Bucket List Guy’ was born. Spreading his message through keynote speaking, blogging, his podcast and a Tedx talk, Travis Bell revels in helping people to live a life of more meaning , more purpose and more fulfilment. Travis takes me through how he became known as ‘The Bucket List Guy’ and the motivation behind inspiring others to realise their potential. We discuss topics such as: The Bucket list concept Re-prioritising what matters in life Covid-19 - Moving from Confusion to Clarity Living by design instead of default Not playing small Articulating a bucket list Realising & Meeting our potential Entrepreneur DNA Self-development Changing the narrative around depression Finding purpose & meaning Connect with Travis and learn more about his work at thebucketlistguy.com , linkedIn , Instagram & Twitter
34 minutes | May 31, 2020
137. The Legendary Geoff McDonald on Mental Health
“What really saved my life during that time was my ability to talk” I am SUPER excited to have gotten the chance to interview the Legendary, Mental Health Power House that is Geoff McDonald! Best known as a global advocate, campaigner and consultant who is passionate about addressing the stigma of mental ill health in workplaces, and about helping organisations embed purpose as a key driver of business performance. His sense of purpose to his work was catalysed by his diagnosis in 2008 of Anxiety fuelled depression. Geoff shares with me his experience with mental health and his journey to recovery as well as the importance behind correct health and wellbeing initiatives within the workplace. We go deep on topics such as; Diagnosis of anxiety fuelled depression The ability to talk Taking responsibility for balance Health & Wellbeing in the workplace Coming to terms with a diagnosis The stigma and associated shame of depression Taking accountability in order to get better The blessing of love during recovery The science of Love & Gratitude Returning to work and reintegrating The importance of a support network Transition of employment into purpose Tools that contribute to maintaining recovery Connect with Geoff and learn more about his work at geoffmcdonald.co.uk , linkedIn & Twitter